ON THE SHELF: New Adult Mysteries and Thrillers to entice

Published 8:00 am Sunday, August 7, 2022

This column was submitted by Evangeline Cessna, Local History Librarian at the Warren County-Vicksburg Public Library.

This week’s column features mysteries and thrillers from the New Adult Fiction collection.

Bestselling author David Baldacci delivers a new mystery with his latest “The 6:20 Man.” Travis Devine has the same routine every day. He gets up, puts on a cheap suit, grabs his faux leather briefcase and boards the 6:20 commuter train to Manhattan to his job as an entry-level analyst at an investment firm. In the mornings, he passes the train ride staring out the window at the fancy homes of the ultra-wealthy, dreaming of joining their ranks. In the evenings, he listens to the latest fiscal news on his phone and prepares for the next grueling day. One day, this routine is shattered by an anonymous email: She is dead. Travis’s coworker and former girlfriend, Sara, is found hanging in the storage room of their office building. The NYPD questions Travis even though they believe it to be a suicide. He then receives another, more ominous visit, that threatens to bring up secrets from his past in the Army unless he agrees to snoop into his firm. Not only must Travis participate in this high-stakes conspiracy, but he must also dodge a murderer who has his own agenda.

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The latest mystery featuring chief of police Kate Burkholder is called “The Hidden One.” More than a decade ago, a beloved Amish bishop named Ananias Stoltzfus disappeared without a trace. When a skeleton showing signs of foul play is uncovered, it is believed something more sinister happened to the bishop. The elders ask Kate to investigate, but she quickly realizes she has a personal connection to the case. Jonas Bowman stands accused of the crime of murder, but he also happens to be Kate’s first love. As she is forced to confront a dark episode from her past, Kate must travel to Pennsylvania’s Kishacoquillas Valley, where the Amish culture differs dramatically from the traditions she is used to. Though Bishop Stoltzfus was well respected, she soon hears about a darker side to this complex man. What secrets led to his brutal death? Someone doesn’t want Kate asking questions, but she refuses to back down even after being assaulted. Kate is determined to expose the truth and remove a killer from the Valley.

“The Woman in the Library” is by Sulari Gentill. The tranquility of the ornate reading room at the Boston Public Library is shattered one day by a woman’s terrified scream. The security guards act fast and instruct everyone inside to stay put until the threat is identified and contained. Four strangers, who happened to sit at the same table, pass the time waiting for the all-clear by conversing and forming new friendships. Each one has his or her own reasons for being in the reading room that morning — it just so happens that one is a murderer.

Uber-bestselling author James Patterson’s latest book is called “Shattered.” Detective Michael Bennett isn’t letting anything tear him away from his new bride, but when he hears that FBI abduction specialist Emily Parker is found strangled in Washington, D.C., Michael jumps into action. Emily was not only his partner, but his best friend, and more. He is the only one who knows her well enough to find the killer — or so he thinks. Michael discovers new secrets Emily was keeping with every new clue he finds. She has a penchant for forging powerful connections with those who have the means and the motive to permanently silence her. While Michael longs to return to his new wife and the familiar chaos of his family, he’s driven to find the dangerous killer who silenced his friend forever.

Allie Reynolds delivers “The Swell,” a heart-pounding read that explores the dangerous ties between a group of elite surfers who are determined to find the perfect waves at any cost — even murder. Kenna Ward was once a passionate surfer, but three years ago she lost her two great loves — after her boyfriend drowned, she hung up her surfboard and swore off the waves for good. She is called back to the beach, however, when her best friend Mikki announces her sudden engagement to a man Kenna has never met. He is a member of a tight-knit group of surfers who believe that waves, weather, and tides are all that matter. Kenna is tempted back into the surf and drawn into the charismatic group and the beach they claim as their own. When members of the group begin to go missing, Kenna realizes that in order to protect Mikki and learn more about the surfers, she must become one of them—without becoming one of their victims.

The latest Ruth Galloway Mystery by Elly Griffiths is called “The Locked Room.” Ruth and Nelson are hunting a murderer when COVID-19 hits, but they are determined to find the killer despite the lockdown. Ruth is clearing out her mother’s home in London when she finds a photo of her Norfolk cottage taken before Ruth lived there. Her mother always hated that cottage, so why would she have a photograph of the place? Since her mother died three years ago, she can’t ask her, and her father claims he has no knowledge of the photo. The only clue is written on the back: Dawn 1969. COVID-19 strikes just as Ruth is returning to Norfolk determined to solve the mystery and she and her daughter are locked down in their cottage and becoming lonely and frustrated. Nelson, on the other hand, has no time to be bored. He’s investigating a series of suicides that could be the work of a serial killer. It is only after linking the victims to an archaeological discovery that he thinks of Ruth. He breaks curfew to visit Ruth’s cottage to find her chatting with her neighbor, whom he remembers as Dawn Lancaster, a carer who was once tried for murdering her employer. When the deaths continue, Nelson is determined to bring Ruth and her daughter to live with him, but they, and Dawn, have vanished.